Winter cabin on Mount Kanin

Winter cabin on Mount Kanin

The research for the Cabin was initiated by OFIS arhitekti and CBD structural engineers in collaboration with Alpine Association of Slovenia, Alpine club Bovec, Speleological Association of Slovenia, Mountain Rescue Association of Slovenia and Ortar& Jerman to develop self-contained wooden shelter, which resist extreme conditions on top of the mountain.
Bivouac is set in the immediate vicinity of the Peter Skalar mountain hut on Kanin. It has a role of winter room, so it is intended for shelter or bivouacing. It temporarily has three beds, 12 blankets are available, its capacity is from 12 to 15 people. It is located in an environment of high mountain karst, where are full winter conditions and the access is very difficult. The bivouac will be in use at a time when the mountain hut will not operate. Key of the bivouac is available in Bovec. Visitors have to write down in the registration book date, name, surname, identity document number, phone number and signature, and at the return date, signature and remarks as well. Contact person for matters related the winter room is Milivoj Šulin, accessible on mobile number +386 41722601.

Kanin is a mountain above a small town, Bovec, with beautiful resorts around the valley. The area is also important due to battles that took place during the World War I. Soldiers were fighting along the Isonzo front and many remains of the battle can still be found in the area. In collaboration with Slovenian mountaineer association and PD Bovec, this particular site was chosen because of its 360-degree views over Slovenia and Italy, and spectacular views to Triglav, Soča Valley and Adriatic sea. It will become a destination for hikers, climbers, cavers, mountaineers, nature lovers and romantics.

Winter cabin on Mount Kanin (photo by Janez Martinčič)

The challenge is to install real objects, shelters in 1:1 on remote sites and study their response to extreme weather, radical temperature shifts, snow and rugged terrain. The harsh conditions of wind, snow, landslides, terrain, and weather require a response of specific architectural forms, structures and concept.
The site is accessible only by climbing or helicopter – the modules and loads are prepared according to the maximum weight and equilibrium limits. Its position within the wilderness requires respect of natural resources ensuring the shelter stability while having a minimal impact on the ground.

Weather conditions are very harsh, especially during the winter. Snow cover lasts more than half of year. The area of Kanin is known for rainfall and extreme snow records. During the winter more than 10 meters of snow can fall. Strong rainstorms and winds can hit this place – rainfall record in Bovec for one day is 363 litres/m2. Earthquakes occasionally occur.

Kanin Winter Cabin forms a compact wooden volume organized with three floor resting platforms. These platforms are hanging towards the valley and a large glazed panoramic window offers astonishing views. A cantilevered overhang, resting part of the cabin, reaches the smallest footprint on the rock. The interior design dictates modesty, subordinate to the function, providing accommodation for up to nine mountaineers.

The cabin settlement and transportation was an extremely difficult task. It was realized by the Slovene Armed Forces helicopter crew. Bad weather and unexpected turbulences lead to the cabin being placed and fixed on site at the third attempt. However, the challenge of the project is to gain new knowledge through unexpected weather conditions. Winter cabin has been fully implemented with donations, also the setup resulted a lot of hard working volunteer hours.


Bivouacs are not suitable place for celebrations and holidays!

They are primarily designed as emergency shelters or as accommodation in the event of continuation of the tour the next morning. Before leaving we clean them and carefully close all the windows and doors.

We kindly leve there a small amount of long-lasted food (dried fruit, chocolate bars, soup bags, canned food …). This food is intended for those, who use the cabin as a refuge as a last resort. If such food waits for us upon arrival, do not eat it.


Zimsko sobo na Kaninu, ki so jo poimenovali po alpinistu Slavku Svetičiču Slavcu, so v sodelovanju s Planinsko zvezo Slovenije, Planinskim društvom Bovec, Jamarsko zvezo Slovenije, Gorsko reševalno zvezo Slovenije ter Ortar & Jerman letos jeseni postavili OFIS arhitekti in CBD. 23. decembra so bivak, katerega kapaciteta je od 12 do 15 oseb, tudi uradno odprli, z njim upravlja PD Bovec, ključ od bivaka pa je mogoče dobiti v Bovcu.

Author: Manca Čujež

Posted in News.